Our first reaction when we saw that Alan Richman anointed three local restaurants as serving one of America's 25 best pizzas in GQ -- Pizzeria Delfina, Gialina Pizzeria, and A16 -- was pride in our hometown: Cool! That's 12 percent of the best pies around!
Richman boasted of visiting 10 different cities -- and going deep into their outlying areas -- ultimately racking up, he said, 20,000 miles. (Hometown New York got 5 out of 25. Big surprise.)
Like his earlier pieces on the best burgers and best sandwiches, he anointed a specific pie for each place: at Pizzeria Delfina, it's the panna pie, "priced at a remarkable $10". We talked to Laura at Delfina, who said "Awesome!" when we told her about Richman's article. She hadn't seen or heard anybody mentioning the piece, but she did notice a lot of panna pies being ordered. "If you eat meat," she told us, "and you get sausage or pepperoni on the panna pie, it's just magical."
Richman liked the (seasonal) wild nettle pizza at no-reservations Pizzeria Gialina, where it's conveniently currently on the menu. And he saluted the Romana pie, sauced with chopped anchovies and whole Nicoise olives, at A16, inconveniently closed for renovations this week until reopening Tuesday May 26 at 5 p.m.
We were a little shocked, reading through his list, to see that our own personal favorite pizzeria in the universe, Nancy Silverton, Mario Batali, and Joe Bastianich's Pizzeria Mozza in Los Angeles, got no love from Richman, who anointed the under-the-radar Antica Pizzeria (on the second floor of a minimall in Marina del Rey) and Tomato Pie (in a Hollywood strip mall) instead. "Maybe he has it in for Batali and Bastianich?," we thought, especially when we read this line in Richman's blog this April: "Why would I patronize another Joe Bastianich-Mario Batali establishment where Joe and Mario are never around - or at least they never seem to be when I show up."But that line turned out to be part of the lead to something of a rave review for Joe and Mario's latest place, Tarry Lodge in Port Chester, N.Y. -- whose clam pie showed up at number 11 on Richman's list. Go figure.